About Me

My photo
This blog is the work of an educated civilian, not of an expert in the fields discussed.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Honestly Deluded

And Also: Sen. Dodd's opposition to the telecommunication immunity provision suggests a value of longshot candidates are akin to third parties -- they might have no shot at winning, but they can bring to the fore important facts as well as pushing major candidates along the way.

Someone was discussing the military industrial complex and referenced the felt need by the government of going into military conflicts, in large part it seems because it was the only way to get the power and such that this brings. There is an implication from some parts that Bushco and such knows their claims that national security requires our foreign military adventures is b.s., that they are just lying for oil, contract goods and so forth. This is the "bimbo theory" in a fashion ... they can chew gum and walk at the same time, and in part be driven by self-delusion. In fact, when self-delusion leads to private gain, it is that much easier. This is not only seen when dealing with food and sex, but they are two good examples.

Basically, we must realize that in large part that these people have convinced themselves that their crap is true. This seems hard for some to understand, because it is clearly crap, but such is the case. It doesn't help that they often do not want to serious explain themselves, realizing that under current law (or logic, if forced to face up to it ... self-delusion hates that ... see the "reality community" alternative), they b.s. us and/or hide what they are doing. But, this does not erase that they generally believe in what they are doing. Bush's self-delusion only makes things worse. Such was often the case -- consider the self-delusion of slave-owners, who thought theirs was the only way, morally and practically.

Consider Sen. Craig. I'm really tired of all the snide remarks made by various sorts about his bathroom habits, including let's say liberal blogs and talkers. At some point, it gets tiresome and just petty. The guy married and has two adult kids, in fact getting married soon after a 1980s page scandal he feared he would get caught into. It clearly appears that he deceives himself (enough evidence is available to doubt him) as to his sexuality. This includes the whole bathroom incident. Its akin to anorexics looking in the mirror and thinking "I'm fat." It doesn't justify his actions, but it is quite possible that he isn't lying ... or, rather, is lying to himself. This deeper problem makes fighting homophobia and public policy that hurts homosexuals that much harder. It has to be faced and mere ridicule (and laughing at what Republicans have to deal with) only takes us so far. And, since people we like lie to themselves too, we laugh a bit at our peril.

On a related note, it is useful to know exactly why you oppose a certain person's views. A talk show host met with disgust the idea that you can "love the sinner, hate the sin" in respect to homosexuals. [It's easy in these cases to change the subject, since the reasoning of the other side often is rather dubious.] This was "hate speech." The person is a self-professed Christian, one who believes Jesus' message was ultimately liberal. I wonder if said person read the whole "love thy enemy" thing. Thus, you care about the humanity of the vilest criminal, but still can despise the crime. Same here. You can think homosexuality is akin to some sort of psychological disorder -- something to be sympathetic about, but drives does not mean the end is benevolent. This is hard for some people to accept -- since the underlining idea is so harsh as applied to homosexuals -- but it is a perfectly sensible principle in general.*

But, many basically do not take the other side as honest, they basically reject the idea of honest differences. How could the other side honestly believe such crap etc. It is amazing that by now, given all "crap" even our loved ones firmly hold dear, that this still is an issue. But, it is, and leads to a lot of bad feelings and shouting. Brings to mind a recent Digby column on the importance of science education, particularly the requirement that you know how to reason first. I question sometimes if people quite know the basics.

BTW, looks like the Rockies are about the lose. The Yanks needed a couple games to get into a stride in 1996 too ... after a 12-1 and 4-0 pair of loses. And, they didn't have an eight game layoff. Still, darn Indians.


* This "rewriting the premise" principle (aka "talking past each other") is popular in law. Many court opinions basically write themselves via the opening premises, often not quite the same thing as what actually happened. But, surely in appellate cases, the "facts" are malleable to better fit the "law" being handed down. [The U.S. Supreme Court largely takes cases to decide broad principles, but it is bad pool to cheat along the way ... of course, they sometimes do.] Same here -- things seem mighty logical when we set up our conclusions. The facts, however, don't always fit them.